Can tryptofan in turkey affect dogs?

Our question this week was:

Does tryptofan have an effect on small breed dogs? We gave our very tiny teacup poodle perhaps a bit too much turkey, and later on he had a seizure. The vet said it could be from the turkey.


Robin Urso


Hi – thanks for your email Robin. Tryptofan in turkey can have a mild affect on some dogs. Some people believe it can make some dogs a little sleepy (like it is supposed to make us sleepy).

However, I have never heard of or seen a dog seizure from eating too much turkey. It is my opinion that the turkey is unrelated to the seizure.

A couple articles that might be helpful to you are Seizure Disorders and Idiopathic Epilepsy in Dogs.

Best of luck!

Dr. Debra

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